Eye Gland Dysfunction. What it is and How can be Treated
Most individuals who complain of having dry eyes are usually diagnosed with a condition called “eye gland dysfunction” or MGD (Meibomian Gland Dysfunction).
What causes Eye Gland Dysfuncton?
Our eye glands are found in the edge of the eyelids. They are responsible for the production of the oil substance needed to prevent the quick evaporation of the tear film. The main cause of eye gland dysfunction is either a build-up or clogging of them or an imbalance of the lipid fluid which is necessary for the even spreading of tear film around the eyes and sealing the eyelids when they are closed.
Common signs to look for if you have Eye Gland Dysfunction
- Redness of the eyes can be one of the first eye gland dysfunction symptoms.
- Dry eyes symptoms such as burning, tearing, scratchiness
- Blurry vision
The following series of eye examination are done for patients suspected with MGD (Meibomian Gland Dysfunction)
- Patient will undergo an evaluation, specifically under the eye gland dysfunction evaluator to check whether the glands are clogged or not.
- The LipiView Interferometer is also used to gauge the quality of oil in the patient’s tear film. Depending on the results, a recommendation will be given if the patient is a suitable candidate for a LipiFlow treatment.
- Schirmer’s test, tear osmolarity, and tear meniscus height is also performed to verify if there is an aqueous deficiency dry eye disease. If the test showed normal tear supply, but there is evidence of dry eyes, then, the patient is diagnosed to have an evaporative dry eye disease.
- Lastly, final examination to view the anatomy or structure of the meibomian glands through the help of a novel infrared scanning device.
Possible treatments for patients with MGD
- Warm compresses and eyelid massages at least twice a day for a period of 4 minutes. The objective of this daily regimen is to liquefy the secretions that have formed into solid which are causing the blockage on the eye glands.
- Eyelid scrubbing with OTC lid scrubs.
- Application of antibiotic drops and/or steroid drops for 2-4 weeks or the intake of oral antibiotics and other anti-inflammatory drugs such as doxycycline.
- Daily consumption of Omega-3 fatty acid supplements under the required daily limit of 1,000mg – 2,000mg or approximately 3 capsules per day.
- Use of topical antibiotic ointments.
- Observance of proper eyelid hygiene, especially to women wearing make-up. For example, right application of eyeliner should be put only on the outer part of the eyelash margin and not on the inside.
- Use of prescribed topical azithromycin, antimicrobial and those drugs with lipid-modulating ingredients.
- LipiFlow Thermal Pulsation Technology where a 12 minute session is performed to unclog the eye glands. Application of controlled heat is done to the inner surface of the margins while at the same time putting pulsating pressure on the outer eyelids. This is the best dry eye therapy solution for patients with MGD.
If you are diagnosed to have Eye Gland Dysfunction avoid doing self-remedy medications because it might worsen the problem. Seek immediate medical help with a dry eye doctor to know the real cause of your dry eyes problem. Ask for the estimated LipiFlow treatment cost.